Press Releases

October 2015

TEDCO Announces Terry Virts, Maryland Born Astronaut, as Opening Keynote Speaker for Entrepreneur Expo

The event is expected to draw more than 600 people including entrepreneurs, investors, legislators and researchers

COLUMBIA, Md. (October 21, 2015) – In its ongoing efforts to support and excite the Maryland entrepreneur community, the Maryland Technology Development Corporation (TEDCO) announced today that Terry Virts, Columbia, Maryland native astronaut and space station resident, will be the opening keynote speaker at the 2015 Entrepreneur Expo on Tuesday, November 17 at the BWI Airport Marriott in Linthicum Heights. Entrepreneur Expo’s closing keynote speaker is Jennifer Fleiss, co-founder and Head of Special Projects at Rent the Runway, the largest rental platform in the world, democratizing luxury for women everywhere.

“This year’s Entrepreneur Expo features a premier lineup of speakers sharing their expertise, experience and tips with Maryland’s incredible community of entrepreneurs,” said Rob Rosenbaum, president and executive director of TEDCO. “We are excited to have someone like Terry Virts with a remarkable career in the fields of leadership, teamwork, science and technology in space and on earth.”

Terry Virts put his mind to become an astronaut at the age of 2, when he saw the video of the men on the moon and announced, “I gonna do that”. He graduated from Oakland Mills High School in Columbia, Maryland, and then graduated with Academic Distinction from the United States Air Force Academy. He has logged over 4,300 flight hours in more than 40 different aircraft and was selected as a pilot by NASA in July 2000. Virts was assigned to Expedition 42/43, he served as commander for Expedition 43, which launched on a Russian Soyuz in December 2014. Virts conducted three spacewalks totaling 19 hours and 2 minutes to configure the wiring for the upcoming delivery of the International Docking Adapters. Virts returned to Earth on June 11, 2015 logging in 212 days in space on two flights.

Coinciding with Global Entrepreneurship Week, which includes worldwide activities in recognition of the entrepreneurial spirit, TEDCO will host this large-scale entrepreneurial event, featuring 50 dynamic sessions for beginner to experienced entrepreneurs.

“Entrepreneurs are the source of innovation and the foundation of our American, and even global economy,” said Terry Virts. “As we explore the solar system and beyond, NASA needs to have a two way relationship with entrepreneurs. We benefit from new ideas and ways of doing things, and we can provide inspiration and new challenges to solve.”

Last year’s Entrepreneur Expo drew more than 600 people, and this year’s lineup of programming and speakers is expected to draw even more of the region’s top entrepreneurs, business owners, investors, legislators and researchers.  The event sponsors include Southern Maryland Innovation and Tech, Economic Alliance of Greater Baltimore, hotdesks, Saul Ewing and Womble & Carlyle.

For additional information, online registration, exhibitor and sponsorship opportunities, visit


The Maryland Technology Development Corporation (TEDCO) is the go-to source for entrepreneurial support and guidance for start-ups and early-stage companies engaged in bringing innovative ideas to market. For more than a decade, the organization has provided funding, mentoring and networking opportunities to support Maryland’s innovation ecosystem. While founded by the Maryland General Assembly, TEDCO is an independent entity that makes seed/early-stage investments and manages private capital for angel and venture capital funds. It is frequently ranked as one of the most active seed/early-stage investors in the nation. The organization plays a key role in bringing research created in Maryland’s educational institutions and federal laboratories into the commercial marketplace. For more information on TEDCO and its programs and resources, visit